I’M one of those weird people who actually enjoy catching public transport.
Call me crazy, but I like being able to bring a book or my music player of choice so I can zone out for those fleeting minutes of me-time, rather than battling traffic to get to my destination.
On a recent trip to Sydney I found myself on a peak hour train; a tourist tucked in among the commuters. Even still, I noticed the unspoken etiquette that had developed, probably over years of catching the train each morning.
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People slipped into the furthest seat from the aisle, to allow fellow commuters easy access to other seats.
Or they stood up to let a window-seater out for their station. Others still put their bags on their laps or on the floor, allowing someone else to sit down in the empty seat next to them.
Everyone did it – except one woman.
When she got on, she slipped her bag onto the seat next to her, leaving it there even as the train filled up. And up. And up.
Then, to my surprise, she blatantly ignored a man asking her – politely – to move her bag. She ignored him until he was forced to physically pick up her bag and move it.
Why did she think she deserved a seat to herself when the rest of us had to share?
Why was her bag so important that it meant someone else might have to stand?
On my return trip, I saw another woman – obviously pregnant – sitting on the stairs because no one had thought to give up their seat for her. Nearby a teenager played his music through external speakers, oblivious to the fact no one else waned to listen.
If you were going to be squashed in a carriage with a group of people you don’t know, you’d hope they’d at least be considerate.
Because it’s the little inconsiderate things like that have the power to ruin someone’s day, or feed that pounding headache you’ve been battling all afternoon.
It made me wonder, is this the future for our G:Link?
When we start to see it filling up, will we see these little inconsiderate gestures rear their ugly heads too?
Let’s hope Gold Coasters are a more considerate bunch than Sydney-siders, otherwise – I’ve seen a glimpse of our future, and it ain’t pretty.
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